Karen Schroeder Kassel, MS, RD, MEd
There are steps that you can take before you become pregnant and during your pregnancy to reduce your risk
of preterm labor
If you have a problem stopping alcohol or illegal drugs, have an honest talk with your healthcare provider.
To reduce the risk of preterm labor progressing to preterm delivery, learn the signs of preterm labor. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any signs of preterm labor.
Women with a history of preterm births may need to have extra care to prevent preterm labor. Your healthcare provider may recommend progesterone therapy during pregnancy or having a cerclage placed.
Abuse during pregnancy. March of Dimes website. Available at:
http://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/abuse-during-pregnancy.aspx. Updated October 2008. Accessed April 23, 2013.
Preterm (premature) labor and birth. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists website. Available at:
http://www.acog.org/~/media/For%20Patients/faq087.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20130423T0923201528. Accessed April 23, 2013.
Prevention of preterm labor and preterm birth. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at:
http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T900646/Prevention-of-preterm-labor-and-preterm-birth. Updated September 10, 2016. Accessed October 6, 2016.
Reduce your risk of preterm labor and birth. March of Dimes website. Available at:
http://www.marchofdimes.org/complications/preterm-labor-and-premature-birth.aspx. Updated September 2012. Accessed April 23, 2013.
7/21/2009 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance
http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T900646/Prevention-of-preterm-labor-and-preterm-birth: McCowan LM, Dekker GA, Chan E, et al. Spontaneous preterm birth and small for gestational age infants in women who stop smoking early in pregnancy: prospective cohort study. BMJ. 2009;338:b1081.
3/31/2014 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance
http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T900646/Prevention-of-preterm-labor-and-preterm-birth: Englund-Ögge L, Brantsæter AL, Sengpiel V, et al. Maternal dietary patterns and preterm delivery: results from large prospective cohort study. BMJ. 2014;348:g1446.
4/24/2014 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance
http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T900646/Prevention-of-preterm-labor-and-preterm-birth: Leventakou V, Roumeliotaki T, Martinez D, et al. Fish intake during pregnancy, fetal growth, and gestational length in 19 European birth cohort studies. Am J Clin Nutr. 2014;99(3):506-516.
Last reviewed March 2017 by
EBSCO Medical Review Board Karli-Rae Kerrschneider, RN
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